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Barncat
Brolly Dolly
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Joined: 26 Nov 2019
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2019 4:51 pm    Post subject: The dreaded starter clutch problem Reply with quote

hello from across the pond. i built up a nice '89 FZR1000 streetfighter a while back that has developed the infamous starter clutch problem on cold starts. on hot starts it still works pretty well, but it's only a matter of time... motor only had an indicated 10K miles on it and turned over smoothly with plugs out when on the bench to do valve shimming. i did not split the cases.

apparently the entire motor from the top end down must be disassembled to get at the starter clutch?

if that's the case then i'm just going to sell it cheap...
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nuggitt
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Barncat. What exactly are your symptoms?

Are you having stalling problems when you put it in first gear? If you are there's an easy fix to cure that. Let me know whats happening. nod
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Barncat
Brolly Dolly
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hi nuggitt- no, this is 100% the starter clutch. intermittent but horrible grating noise/failure to engage from the rollers or such the instant the button is hit. it's not the splines on the starter motor either- they look brand new. bike runs fabulously once started.

i've done top end rebuilds on many different 70's era bikes but just am not in the mood to tear this motor completely apart, which i believe is the only option. ..
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nuggitt
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh sh*t.

It looks like there's a bike coming up for sale then. It does sound like its a full strip down to cure the problem. I've never done it and I wouldn't fancy doing it either.

What about replacing the engine to save all the hassle? smile
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Barncat
Brolly Dolly
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

and as referred to in the original post i did, i thought, test for this while motor was out on bench by hooking the starter motor up to a battery briefly several times to check the starting system. very smooth, but plugs were out so no compression and obviously less load... also with such a low miles motor i figured the issue was unlikely.
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Barncat
Brolly Dolly
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2019 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

a swappable motor is generally hard to come by, and of course the whole point of this bike is the monster 1000cc unit. bad bad luck.

i believe it's impossible to just split the lower case off without removing the top end.

would still appreciate a confirmation on this from someone who's done it before. very little info on this out there that i've found. this model is new-to-me...
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pilninggas
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2019 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you tried it with a [really] good battery?

The mechanical side of the starter system [clutch and chain] do not work very well with batteries that are marginal/on the way out. The slight decrease in RPM and difference in required torque v motor torque shows itself up as clatter and failure to engage properly.
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Barncat
Brolly Dolly
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 26, 2019 10:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the battery idea is a good one, that had occurred to me. i've got 12.93V so it's topped right off and charging system works great, but battery is smallish and could be slightly down on CCA. will jump it to a car battery and report back. if it's that simple it'll be miraculous but stranger things have happened. ordinarily one expects to hear the starter slowing down and laboring to indicate a weak battery condition, but this unit may be hypersensitive as you suggest pilninggas.
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kboehringer
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Joined: 30 Jun 2019
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Location: Peachtree City, GA USA
PostPosted: Wed Nov 27, 2019 2:43 pm    Post subject: Don't give up... Reply with quote

Barncat wrote:

i believe it's impossible to just split the lower case off without removing the top end.


Barncat,
Although I have NOT performed this repair on an FZR motor, I have been forced to make the starter clutch repair on an XS1100 and a SECA 650 ("Similar" motor configuration).

You are correct, there is no "Easy" way to do this repair and the head and cylinders must be removed, at least for those I have done. A replacement clutch is a pretty inexpensive part but all the gaskets and etc needed add a good bit to the overall cost of repair.

Since you mentioned strong experience with top-end rebuilds I would encourage you that this type of repair, although much more involved should not be beyond your capabilities.... Everyone has to do a chore the first time..... guess this is your chance! DON'T GIVE UP!

I would encourage you also that delaying the repair and continuing to drive it COULD put garbage from the damaged clutch into your main/crank bearings, valves, etc. Continued driving would be ill-advised.

Sincerely,
Kurt
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Kurt Boehringer
Peachtree City, Georgia USA
1992 - FZR1000 - Genesis
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Barncat
Brolly Dolly
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 27, 2019 7:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

well, just experimented with jumping it to a running car- no difference from on board bike battery alone. so the sprag clutch is hosed. there are no other tweaks left...

Kurt- i see your near Atlanta. thanks for the pep talk but my rule after 20 cafe builds is if ya gotta split the cases it ain't worth it. bike was never registered so it only saw a total of 3-4 miles around the neighborhood here to check tuning. too many cops to test further. there was no metal in the oil and will not be doing more tests.

bike is on craigslist Tampa as we speak, just go to motorcycles and type FZR1000 in the search bar if anyone is interested. spent 2 1/2 months on it to get it to where it is, with a few details to finish. clear FL Title, $1450. covers only the purchase price plus parts to refurbish thus far.

thanks for the suggestions guys.
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nuggitt
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 27, 2019 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's the link...

https://tampa.craigslist.org/search/mca?query=fzr1000 thumbsup
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